Understanding Google My Business & Local Search
Some Tidbits from Google’s Rollouts Yesterday
The weird stuff from yesterday has come into clearer focus. New Maps, Back to the Future on Review Rating Stars (although red this time), New G+ (argh)….but here are some tidbits that might make all of the once and future changes a tad more understandable:
- The new Google Maps is currently available by invite only. You must go here and request an invitation as it is still considered a preview.
- However there is some leakage in the preview. To see the new Maps list view of local search results add the search parameter “&tbm=plcs” to a local search result. Even though the URL parameter indicates that this is the Places page (whose link was removed last week from the main search page), it currently is only visible to the public via the new Google Maps to those that have access to the preview.
- Whether this view will ever be visible via the main search results is unknown. Certainly retaining the old url parameter makes it confusing. But it appears so far that local isn’t so much being rebranded as being absorbed into Maps and Plus. Still no real clear name for it. I guess that entitles us to make it up. Nominations are open.
- Google is abandoning the Zagat rating system. I guess they are planning on selling it to Yahoo. Regardless, in another visible leak of the coming upgrade, you can see the new rating system on your
Place Page G+ Local Pageuh your (local and perhaps social) G+ Page by adding this search parameter “&rfmt=s” to the G+ Page URL.
- In the current iteration of the G+ Page for Local with the new review notation, it appears that there is a bug that prevents owner comments from displaying. (Hat tip to Dave…welcome back btw)
- If you are like me, and find the new,
improvedG+ layout to be way too distracting and hard to follow you can change it most of the way back by using this tip from David Fuchs:
Go to your home page
– Click “More” on top
– Scroll all the way to the bottom
– two icons choose the left one.
To fix the profile page
[x] Change the presentation of some pages to work better with screen readers and other accessibility tools.
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